The St. Louis Cardinals, in conjunction with Lelands.com and Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM) will be offering more than 380 unique items from Busch Stadium in an historic online auction beginning Friday, Nov. 4 – just a few days before a wrecking ball will strike the first blow in the demolition of the venerable stadium.
Information is available at www.stlcardinals.com or www.Lelands.com . The Busch Stadium Farewell Auction Presented by Lelands.com features more than 380 lots of significant stadium memorabilia including: autographed lockers with namplates and clubhouse chairs from Pujols, Edmonds, Carpenter and Rolen and many others; player jersey and equipment; photographs and pennants that have been displayed throughout the stadium, bases and pitching mounds including the last set ever used at the ballpark; a turnstile signed by the 2005 team; Fredbird’s car; and even a urinal from the Cardinals clubhouse.
One of the most significant pieces in the auction is the last home plate used in the stadium. The plate is being transferred to the Cardinals’ new stadium where it will be used in the teams’ 2006 opening home stand, then awarded to the winning bidder. That plate will have been used in the last game at Busch Stadium as well as the first game in the new facility.
“Lelands.com is thrilled to be coordinating such a historically important auction,” says Mike Heffner, President of Lelands.com. “Busch Stadium has been the backdrop of some memorable moments in Cardinals history, as well as a home to some of the most passionate and loyal fans in all of professional sports. This auction is a once in a lifetime opportunity for those fans to forever own a piece of this historic venue.”
Heffner and his team of experts spent considerable time with the Cardinals over the last three months going through the archives and every nook and cranny of the stadium, chronicling the pieces and determining their values.
“There are some truly unique items that will be sold at a variety of prices points available to fans through this auction,” Heffner says. “This really is a great opportunity for anyone to own a piece of history.”
Other items in The Busch Stadium Farewell Auction Presented by Lelands.com include: Many of the furnishings from Tony La Russa’s last Busch Stadium office, including desk, chair, phone, credenza and bookcase. Last home plate used on the field Busch Stadium’s last pitching rubber The left-field foul pole Part of the wall padding – signed by Bruce Sutter, Keith Hernandez, Whitey Herzog and others – used during the 1982 season, including the ’82 World Series in which the Cardinals beat the Milwaukee Brewers in seven games, winning the last two games at Busch Stadium to wrap up the Series. Cardinals Hall of Fame plaque collection (49 in all) of Stan Musial, Bob Gibson, Lou Brock, Steve Carlton, Ozzie Smith and several others. Concession stand signs The bases used in Game 3 of the 2004 World Series Complete set of World Champion banners – nine in all – beginning with 1926 and ending with 1982 Game-worn player jerseys from the final regular-season home game Fredbird’s car Owner’s box chair and even a urinal from the home clubhouse
“This is a special time in the history of the team, our fans, our community and our players,” says Cardinals president Mark Lamping. “We’re taking special steps to ensure the preservation of the history of Busch Stadium while offering our fans a chance to own a piece of the ballpark that provided all of us so many great memories.”
A total of 3,227 games were played over the 40-year history of Busch Stadium, including six World Series and eight National League Championship Series. The stadium was also home to the NFL Cardinals before moving to Arizona and has played host to a number of entertainment acts including The Beatles, The Who, The Rolling Stones, Elton John, Fleetwood Mac and others. Since mid-summer, Cardinals Care and the United Way of Greater St. Louis raised more than $66,000 through a raffle giving one lucky winner the chance to trigger the first wrecking ball that will begin dismantling the stadium.
In addition, luxury suite furniture from the stadium was removed and donated by the Cardinals to Habitat for Humanity. Crews have also removed the scoreboard and the statues of Stan Musial, Jack Buck, Gussie Busch and Cardinals Hall of Famers from the old stadium and moved them to the new ballpark, where they’ll continue to have a home. Furthermore, the Cardinals – eager to preserve a part of Busch Stadium’s 40-year legacy – will donate a number of special stadium items to the Missouri History Museum and the Cardinals Hall of Fame Museum, while other memorabilia will be saved for display in the new Ballpark Village.
Bidding and registration for the Busch Stadium Farewell Auction Presented by Lelands.com will be conducted at www.Lelands.com , with bidding concluding on Nov. 23. Bids will be taken online or by telephone. Catalogs are available at stlcardinals.com . At just over 100 pages, this highly collectible, full-color official catalog features more than 380 unique, beautifully photographed items from the final season in Busch Stadium. The catalog includes a special section on the history of Busch Stadium written by renowned sports writer Rob Raines.